PPSC Syllabus

Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC) is responsible for conducting various civil services exams for Punjab. Through these exams, candidates are recruited for civil services and departmental posts. Essential steps involved in the selection process of Punjab State Civil Services Combined Competitive Examination are as follows:

  • Preliminary Competitive Examination; and
  • Main Competitive Examination (written and Interview).

Candidates can also visit the linked article and get details about the upcoming
government exams that comprise current affairs and general awareness as an important topic in the syllabus.

Kickstart your competitive exam preparation now and complement it with the links given below:

PPSC Syllabus 2022

The PPSC 2020 Exam Pattern for different stages are as follows:

PPSC Prelims Exam Syllabus

Paper I – General Studies

1. Everyday Science

  • States of matter, the structure of atom, versatile nature of carbon. Acids, bases, salts, corrosion in metals, the action of soaps.
  • Life on Earth – evolution, marine & terrestrial life. Human body and life processes, nutrition, disease – its causes & prevention, infectious diseases, lifestyle diseases.
  • Public health initiatives, mother and child health, immunisation & vaccination, HIV-AIDS, TB, polio etc.
  • Force-laws of motion & gravitation, Archimedes principle. Energy – kinetic & potential.
  • Light – reflection & refraction – concepts and applications. Sound – propagation & reflection – concepts and applications. Electric current – concepts and applications.
  • Computers and telecommunication – concepts and applications.

2. Environmental Studies

  • Composition and structure of the atmosphere. Solar system – heat balance & temperature.
  • Atmospheric circulation & weather system, water cycle.
  • Climate change – fossil fuels, greenhouse gases, renewable energy, clean development mechanism, carbon credits.
  • Water – oceans, rivers, glaciers, lakes, groundwater etc. Biodiversity & conservation.
  • Soil – types, crops, food chain etc. Pollution and toxicity etc.

3. Political Theory & International Order

  • Basic concept of freedom, equality, social justice, rights & duties, citizenship, nationalism, secularism etc.
  • United Nations and its organs/agencies, other international organisations like the World Bank, IMF, WTO, EU, G20, BRICS etc. and their role in the World peace, trade & development.

4. Indian Polity

  • Basic features, provisions, schedules of the Indian Constitution, key amendments.
  • Panchayati Raj. Elections – People’s Representation Act, electoral reforms. Rise of regionalism and coalition politics.
  • Armed challenges to the Indian state since independence.

5. History of India

  • The Indus valley civilisation.
  • The Aryan and the Vedic age. Jainism and Buddhism.
  • The Maurya Gupta periods.
  • Advent of Islam and Sultanate period (political, social & cultural). The Bhakti Movement.
  • The Mughals (political, social & cultural till Aurangzeb).
  • The coming of the European Powers and the advent of British rule.
  • The Mutiny of 1857.
  • The British rule and the Indian National Movement (1857-1947).

World History

  • The Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution in Europe.
  • The American Revolution 1776.
  • The French Revolution, 1789.
  • The Russian Revolution, 1917.
  • World Wars I & II

6. Indian Economy

  • Indian economic development (1950-1991) – key economic policies, public sector dominance, bank nationalisation etc.
  • Five-year plans – key goals and main achievements.
  • Liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation era since 1991 – key policies, decisions and results.
  • Performance of Indian economy since 1991 – Growth, fiscal & revenue deficits, trade, commerce & balance of payments, inflation, growth of service sector.
  • Key challenges and responses – agriculture and food security, industrialisation, poverty alleviation & employment, rural & urban infrastructure, social sector – health, education etc.

7. Geography

  • Population – distribution, density, growth and comparison. Migration – types, causes and consequences.
  • Human development. Human settlements. Land resources and agriculture.
  • Water resources.
  • Mineral and energy resources. Manufacturing industries.
  • Planning and sustainable development in India. Transport and communication.
  • International trade.
  • Geographical perspective on selected issues and problems.

8. Current events of national and international importance.

9. Punjab

  • Geography
    • Geographical and agro-climatic regions, rivers, water resources, sharing of waters, demographics, human development indices
  • People, Society and Culture
    • Major personalities in the history of Punjab, religious movements, major religions & spiritual personalities, Punjabi literature, folklore, performing arts, fine arts and crafts
  • History
    • Sufis, saints and gurus, Lodhis and Mughals, Sikh rulers, the British period, nationalist movement in Punjab, Punjab in independent India.
  • Economy
    • Agriculture, animal husbandry, industrial & service sectors, major occupations, development & economic growth, public finance (including central-state fiscal issues), public sector institutions, cooperatives etc.

Paper II – Civil Services Aptitude Test

  1. Reading comprehension; Punjabi and English language comprehension, antonyms and synonyms, grammar and sentence formation.
  2. Interpersonal skills, including communication skills
  3. Logical reasoning, analytical and mental ability
  4. Basic numerical skills; numbers, magnitudes, percentages, numerical relation appreciation
  5. Data analysis; Graphic presentations, charts, tables, spreadsheets.

Note: The topics listed in the syllabus are only indicative of the general guidance of

the candidates and cannot be deemed as an exhaustive list.

The candidates can go through the relevant topics useful for their upcoming exams from the links provided below:

SLAT Admit Card CTET Syllabus
SLAT Result UPTET Syllabus

PPSC Mains Exam Syllabus

Once the candidate clears the Prelims written test with qualifying marks, they will be allowed to sit for the Main written exam of the PPSC 2020 selection process. The main exam is further divided into the written test and the final Personality Test/Interview.

Additional detail of the PPSC Main Written exam is given below:

PPSC Mains Exam Pattern
Papers Subject Name Maximum Marks of the exam Duration of the exam
Paper I Punjabi (in Gurumukhi Script) Compulsory (of 10+2 Standard) 100 marks 3 hours
Paper-II English Compulsory (of 10+2 standard) 100 marks 3 hours
Paper III Essay 150 marks 3 hours
Paper IV General Studies Paper 1 (History, Geography, and Society) 250 marks 3 hours
Paper V General Studies Paper 2 (Indian Constitution & Polity, Governance and International Relations) 250 marks 3 hours
Paper VI General Studies Paper 3 (Economy, Statistics, and Security Issues) 250 marks 3 hours
Paper VII General Studies Paper 4 (Science & Technology, Environment, Problem-solving & Decision-Making) 250 marks 3 hours
Total 1500 marks

Paper I – Punjabi

Part A

  • Comprehension (Unseen Passage)­ – An unseen passage followed by Questions to be answered
  • Precis Writing
  • Letter writing (200 Words)
  • Essay writing (Any general topic – 300 Words)
  • Translation

Part B

  • Grammar

Paper II – English

Part A

  • Comprehension (Unseen Passage)­ – An unseen passage followed by Questions to be answered
  • Precis Writing
  • Letter writing (200 Words)
  • Essay writing (Any general topic – 300 Words)
  • Translation

Part B

  • Grammar

Paper III – General Essay

Candidates will be required to write three short essays in English or Punjabi on specified topics. The choice of subjects will be given. They will be expected to keep close to the subject of the essay to arrange their ideas in an orderly fashion and to write concisely. Credit will be given for content value, an effective and exact expression.

Paper IV – General Studies I (History, Geography and Society)

  • Section 1: History
    • History of the world: Events from the 18th century; industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like Communism, Capitalism, Socialism etc. -their forms and effect on society.
    • Indian culture – Salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modem times.
    • Modem Indian history from the middle of the eighteenth century until the present – significant events, personalities and issues.
    • Socio-religious reform movements with special reference to Punjab.
    • The Freedom Struggle – its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country, with special reference to Punjab.
    • Post-independence consolidation and reorganisation within the country.
    • History of Punjab:
      • Ranjit Singh’s rise to power, civil and military administration and relations with the British
      • Annexation of Punjab with special reference to the causes and consequences of the Anglo-Sikh wars.
  • Section 2: Geography
    • Physical Geography: Salient features of the world’s physical geography. Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian subcontinent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).
    • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, tsunamis, Volcanic activity, cyclones etc., geographical features and their location – changes in critical geographical features (including water bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.
    • Geography of Punjab:
      • Physiographic details of Punjab; Geomorphic features of Punjab, Punjab’s strategic location with reference to International Border;
      • Crops of Punjab; Modern concepts of Farming; Problems faced by agriculturists/ Issues in Agriculture: Depletion of groundwater, etc;
  • Section 3: Society
    • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
    • Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies
    • Effects of globalization on Indian society
    • Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism
    • Ethics and Society: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships.
    • Human Values – Role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values; lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders and reformers – Gautam Buddha, Mahavira, Kabir, Guru Nanak; Swami Vivekananda, Jyotibha Phule, Ishwar Chandra Vidya Sagar and Mahatma Gandhi.
    • Vulnerable sections of the population – Welfare schemes by the Centre and State of Punjab and their performance; Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for their protection and betterment.
    • Issues relating to development and management of Social sector – Health, Education, Human resources, issues relating to poverty and malnutrition.

Paper V – General Studies II (Indian Constitution & Polity, Governance and International Relations)

  • Section 1: Indian Constitution & Polity
    • Indian Constitution – historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
    • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
    • Separation of powers between various organs; Dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
    • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries
    • Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
    • Structure, organisation and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary; Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the polity.
    • Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.
    • Appointment to various Constitutional posts; Powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies
    • District Administration – Evolution of District Administration; Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies.
  • Section 2: Governance
    • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies
    • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation; Development processes and the development organisations- the role of NGOs, SHGs, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders
    • Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e­ governance – applications, models, successes, limitations and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures; Role of civil services in a democracy; Changing trends in Governance
    • Values and Ethics in Governance – Ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding.
    • Probity in Governance: Concept of Governance; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; corporate governance; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.
  • Section 3: International Relations
    • India and its neighbourhood – relations;
    • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests;
    • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian Diaspora
    • Important International institutions, agencies and fora – their structure and mandate.

Note: The candidates are expected to be aware of the current developments related to the topics mentioned above.

Paper VI – General Studies III (Economy, Statistics and Security Issues)

  • Section 1: Indian Economy
    • Issues relating to planning, mobilisation of resources, growth, development and employment; sustainable development; Inclusive growth and issues arising from it; Government Budgeting;
    • Major crops, cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems; storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce – issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers; Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Technology missions; economics of animal rearing.
    • Public Distribution System – objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security;
    • Food processing and related industries in India – scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management
    • Land reforms in India; Effects of liberalisation on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
    • Infrastructure – Energy, Ports, Roads, models
    • Human Resource Development:
      • Importance of Human capital in economic development
      • Nature, types and problems of unemployment in India, Trends of Employment in India, Skill development and demographic dividend
    • Punjab Economy: Planning – various aspects of developmental planning; Industry; Infrastructure.
  • Section 2: Statistical Analysis, Graphs and Diagrams
    • This part will test the candidate’s ability to draw conclusions from information presented in a statistical, graphical or diagrammatical form and to interpret the same.
  • Section 3: Issues related to Security
    • Linkages between development and spread of extremism;
    • Role of external, State and non-State actors in creating challenges to internal security; Challenges to internal security through communication networks; role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges,
    • Basics of cybersecurity; money-laundering and its prevention;
    • Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
    • Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate

Note: The candidates are expected to be aware of the current developments related to the topics mentioned above.

Paper VII – General Studies IV (Science & Technology, Environment, Problem-Solving & Decision-Making)

  • Section 1: Science and Technology
    • Science and Technology
    • Developments and applications of science and technology and their effects in everyday life
    • Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenisation of technology and developing new technology.
    • Recent developments in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano­ technology, etc.
    • Issues relating to intellectual property rights.
    • Modern Trends in Life Sciences
    • Progress of Agricultural Science and its Biotechnology and its applications; Veterinary and Animal Sciences – the latest developments.
    • Introduction to and applications of Genetic Engineering & Stem Cell Research
    • Human Diseases and Microbial infections; Common infection and preventive measures; preventive measures during outbreaks; Immunity and vaccination.
  • Section 2: Environment
    • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, Issues related to Climate change; environmental impact assessment
    • Water management – Issues in India; Present scenario, Methods and importance of water conservation
    • Definition, nature, types and classification of disasters
    • Natural Hazards: Floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, etc., Risk reduction and mitigation measures
  • Section 3: Situations in Civil Service – Problem-Solving and Decision-Making
    • Tackling situations of Natural disasters/ Major Accidents/ Law and order, Controlling riots, Handling public protests and dharnas, Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation, Designing Projects, Implementation of National Flagship Schemes/ Programmes, Public-Private Partnership in effective service delivery, Managing and financing Municipal services e.g. Solid waste management, Conservation of natural resources – water, forests, etc, Pollution control, Reviving a loss-making PSU, Planning and target achievement, gender sensitisation and women empowerment, Empowerment of vulnerable sections of the society, Improving Education and Enhancing Skill development, Urban settlement-Slums and housing issues, Managing Issues related to Urban/ Rural drinking water supply and sanitation, etc.

Note: A duly structured situation will be presented to the candidates, and they will be

asked to analyse and suggest their own solution to the problem arising out of the situation.

Personality Test/Interview

  • Once the candidate has cleared both the Prelims and Mains written exam, they will be allowed to appear for the Interview.
  • Only 3 candidates will be called for the Interview for each vacancy.
  • The interview round will carry 150 marks.
  • Candidates must score at least 45% to be considered for the appointment.


PPSC, the topmost constitutional body and a government agency under Punjab’s government, stands for Punjab Public Service Commission. Apart from conducting competitive exams, it is also responsible for transferring and promoting from service to service. You can also download the PPSC Syllabus PDF for more details.

For the Best preparation strategy for competitive exams, candidates can visit the linked article and get detailed study material and preparation tips to excel in the examination.

Aspirants who shall be appearing for the exam for the first time and are willing to get some preparation tips and study material for the competitive exams can turn to BYJU’S for assistance.

Frequently Asked Questions about PPSC Syllabus


What is the weightage for the PPSC interview round?

The interview round will carry 150 marks.


What are the criteria to be called for the interview for the PPSC exam?

Candidates must score at least 45% to be considered for the appointment.

To get details of other PSC Examinations, candidates can check the table below:

Karnataka KAS Exam UPPSC PCS Exam
APPSC Group 1 Exam TNPSC Group 1
Kerala PSC Exam WBPSC Exam


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